Paige Larson: Day 15 in Beijing



So far today, Earl Connor won a gold in the T42 100 meters!! Chantal Petitclerc set a world and Paralympic record in the 200 meters in her heat (the final is later today). And the temperature must be in the 30s again today.

Today is the Autumn Festival. It is something about a full moon in the fall where they celebrate the harvest, like Thanksgiving I suppose. But here they go out at night, socialize, talk about life and such while eating moon cakes – obviously based on the full moon.

One class I left out yesturday was amputees. They are T42, and perhaps some others, but Canada does not have any amps other than those who are T42s.

And the shot is actually returned along a rail system just like bowling balls are returned to the bowler. The javelin and discuss are returned in the red remote controlled cars.

Another sound of the Olympic Green is the Paralympic torch. It makes a noise like a giant camping lantern that you can hear in the Bird’s Nest, at the warm up track and on the Olympic Green. Adding more noise to the neverending noise that is this Village and Green!!

There really are a staggering number of people here. When you walk down the Green you are constantly bumping into people, getting knocked and jostled. It is not our usual way and most of us find it an infringement on our “personal space.” I suppose with the sheer number of people they have here, they are just used to it. If you said excuse me or sorry every time you bumped someone you would never stop saying it. I find it somewhat tiring as it is so out of the norm for us, and am glad to get back in the Village after walking back from the Stadium. Packed rather like shopping on Christmas Eve every day of the year I suppose!! Many of them also seem to be very tired as you see people sitting where ever there is a seat, taking a little nap. With so many of them dozing at any time of the day they must just not get enough sleep at night!!

As you all know, McDonald’s is here. They sponsor the Games and have a spot in the caferteria in the Village. There is also a GIANT one in the Green. Chinese kids are just like North American ones and I have seen them pestering their parents to take them there. Some things cross all cultures….too bad McDonald’s is one of them!

The Green also has a Chinese cultural section with displays by each of their many provinces. It is quite interesting, but each tent is quite small, some holding only about 20 people. It is so crowded that you can’t stop to look at anything as you are herded along. There are line ups at most of the tents, and I could not bear the crowds to go in! I made it into a few where the line ups were small and they were fairly interesting. I also went into the Johnson and Johnson’s pavillion where they  have about six of the terra cotta warriors on display. They are quite impressive. Unfortunately, the place where they come from, where the hugh display of them is, is about a 1.5 hour flight away, so I won’t get to see them. A couple of the other therapists are flying there after the Games to see them though.

So another day continues here, and things are heating up towards the final days of competition. Having a great time!! Paige

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